CompaniesApr 26 2012

HSBC to cut 3,000 jobs as it restructures ahead of RDR

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ByDonia O’Loughlin

Banking group HSBC has confirmed that 2,217 staff will leave the business as part of an ongoing restructuring, with around a quarter of the cuts directly related to the effect on business levels of the upcoming Retail Distribution Review.

HSBC said there would be a total of 3,167 roles cut in the UK, with a number of those affected being repositioned. It said the moves follow the group’s announcement last year that by the end of 2013 there would be around 30,000 fewer roles within the bank worldwide.

HSBC announced in June 2011 that it will be culling 460 jobs from the wealth management division due to the impact of the RDR, as part of a range of cuts that it said would see a total of 700 staff axed from across the group.

HSBC said it is “likely” that the majority of those affected will be in senior or middle management positions.

It added that the changes resulted in large part from “fundamental changes to the regulatory framework in the UK” and the growing capital requirements that are being imposed on banks, which will prompt an increase in the underlying cost of providing banking services in the UK.

Only a small proportion of customer facing staff will be hit by the cuts and the bank’s 1,250 strong UK branch network will be largely unaffected by these changes, HSBC said, confirming that no branches will close as a direct result of today’s announcement.

Brian Robertson, chief executive of HSBC Bank Plc, said: “We have taken the difficult decision to restructure HSBC in the UK in order to reduce layers of management and bureaucracy.

“These changes will enhance our efficiency as detailed in the strategy we announced last May and they will also help ensure our continued profitability in the face of the changing regulatory landscape.”

David Fleming, Unite national officer, said: “Following much speculation it has now been confirmed that HSBC is sending over 3,100 of its staff to the back of the unemployment queues.

“There is no justification for this awful treatment of staff. How can the bank announce 3,167 staff cuts when it was the workforce that delivered it a profit of £13.8bn last year?

“The hypocrisy of CEO Stuart Gulliver taking home £8m, while claiming the bank must cut thousands of staff in order to save money, will not be lost on the workforce.”